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Automation at the core with Bosch Rexroth:

Selecting appropriate equipment and machinery for vertical farms

"Our engineers design integrated solutions that seamlessly incorporate automation technologies, control systems, and infrastructure components to create efficient and productive vertical farming environments," says Steffen Zoeller, Senior Business Development Manager at Bosch Rexroth.

Bosch Rexroth entered the CEA space in 2023, seeing horticulture as an already established sector while vertical farming is horticulture's future due to the efficiency and resilience that the sector promises.

Bosch Rexroth offers multiple solutions for controlled environment agriculture which are all aimed at precise environmental control and monitoring, optimized automation and enhanced energy efficiency. For example, the company's ctrlX CORE, I/O, HMI and IPC technologies enable precise monitoring and control of environmental parameters in CEA facilities. These solutions can be seamlessly integrated to provide the best user experience and efficient operations.

"Vertical farming relies heavily on advanced technology such as IoT sensors, robotics, and data analytics to monitor and manage crop growth. As a leader in automation and digitalization, Bosch Rexroth is well-positioned to develop integrated solutions that streamline operations, improve productivity, and optimize yields for vertical farming operators," explains Steffen.

Bosch Rexroth's electric drive technologies can be used for the precise control of conveyor belts, robotic arms and other motor-driven systems, while the company also offers linear motion and assembly technologies to facilitate the movement of equipment within a space. Bosch Rexroth prides itself on providing energy-efficient solutions, with variable-frequency drives and servo motors providing precise control of pumps, fans and other equipment.

"Our ctrlX AUTOMATION portfolio, for example, provides a flexible and future-proof automation solution that enables seamless integration of various machines and systems. This allows for efficient control and monitoring of production processes, leading to improved efficiency and reduced downtime," explains Steffen.

Engineering services at the core
As Steffen explains, the engineering team at Bosch Rexroth works with clients to select the appropriate equipment and machinery for their vertical farming operations, even developing prototypes for testing and validating to ensure that the final design meets performance requirements.

The team also develops programmable logic controllers (PLC) to automate various functions in the farm, human-machine interfaces (HMI) for user-friendly monitoring and control, and IoT integration to enable data-driven decision-making, optimized resource use and maximized crop yield.

"We offer ongoing technical support services to assist clients with troubleshooting, equipment maintenance and performance optimization," says Steffen. "Our solutions also come with remote monitoring and diagnostic capabilities, which allow our team to proactively identify and address issues before they impact production or cause any downtime."

As a multinational company with a well-developed network of sales offices and production facilities, Bosch Rexroth can serve customers around the world from initial consultation through to design, installation, commissioning, and ongoing service and support. The company's involvement in multiple industries also allows its team to bring added value and holistic thinking to the vertical farming industry.

"As a global leader in automation and control systems, we're excited to empower vertical farming operators with the tools they need to thrive in a rapidly evolving market. Together, we're shaping a brighter, greener future for agriculture," Steffen says.

For more information:
Bosch Rexroth
Steffen Zoeller, Senior Business Development Manager